Title: The Ungovernable Force

Also known as:

Year: 2015

Genre: Independent / Comedy / Horror

Language: English

Runtime: 101 min

Director: Paul M. McAlarney

Writer: Paul M. McAlarney

IMDb: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3628704/

There’s a secret war being fought between nazi cops who patrol the city streets and the cult of homeless bums who run on chemicals and black magic. However, a group of young-punks who are only trying to enjoy a life of wild concerts, good sex and bad drugs, find themselves caught in the middle of this war. Now the punks must team up with the city’s freaks and unwanted if they wish to stop the local sheriff, who’s a rapist and murderer, from winning the election and taking over the city.

Our Thoughts:
Whether you’re a fan of Troma or not, it is impossible to ignore that Lloyd Kaufman and Michael Herz kick started a culture when they made “The Toxic Avenger” in 1984. There are numerous movements and cultures within cinema, but for many of us, watching “The Toxic Avenger” or any of the other titles produced by Troma, was something much different. There simply wasn’t anything out there that could prepare you for what Troma was; the movies were rebellious, they were disgusting, they were hilarious, they were sexy, they were cheap, but more importantly, they didn’t give a fuck.

Troma was the cinematic equivalent of punk music: they were independent films that didn’t focus on the technical aspects. The movies were whatever they wanted to be without the concern of what the general populous believes a movie ought to be. That’s why you have a movie where a mutant superhero crushes people’s skulls and another with radioactive teenagers turning their school into a wasteland. It was that attitude that made them different and why there is a small but dedicated and loyal fanbase to Troma — they were movies made for a certain kind of people. They were movies that felt like they were made for you because everyone else seemed to not understand what Troma was brushed it off as nothing more than trash.

When you can inspire that kind of loyalty you also inspire creativity — helping to convince everybody to go out there and make whatever it is that they want to make. And that’s what brings us here today with “The Ungovernable Force” — an unapologetic love letter to punks, Troma and not giving a fuck.

If you were to ask me to describe “The Ungovernable Force” without looking up a plot synopsis, I would say: it’s punk versus cops in an exaggerated world. However, what the film is actually about is…punks versus cops in an exaggerated world…

Here, I thought I was over simplifying the premise, but no, that’s actually what “The Ungovernable Force” is about.

Well, that’s not entirely true. I am simplifying a little bit since there is a bit of a coming-of-age story buried amongst the drugs, the gore and the sex. However the focus is more about the punks that team up with bums to fight dirty cops — you know, freaks and rejects going up against fascist law enforcement officials, and a sheriff who's running for office that may or may not be a rapist/serial killer (spoiler: he is). In general though, it’s about counter-culturists fighting the morally corrupt government. And that’s not to be dismissive of the movie, but “The Ungovernable Force” is more about action and tone than it is about traditional storytelling and filmmaking.

After all, like the tagline states: “Putting oi back into exploitation.”

“The Ungovernable Force” is the kind of movie where you worry less about the logistics of how or why all of the characters are interconnected or why the police and the homeless are doing what they're doing. Instead, what you appreciate is the unadulterated chaos of what’s ensuing on screen where you have scenes such as a tribe of homeless people turning one of their own (when they’re dead) into a powdered form of a drug.

It may seem like an excuse to say that the technical fallacies are unimportant when it comes to “The Ungovernable Force” but it falls more inline with context rather than ignoring problems. Paul M. McAlarney’s film is a love letter to that beautiful subhumanoid creature known as Troma, as well as being a film made by punks for punks. Knowing that, context is important because it allows you to understand that “The Ungovernable Force” is out of control exploitation because that’s what it was intended to be. McAlarney and Co. wanted to make a movie that reminded them of the movies they loved while being about a life style they know (having fun and fighting the system), except with an over-the-top schlocky twist and lo-fi cinematic aesthetics.

The only true issue I can take “The Ungovernable Force” is its runtime. I can respect and appreciate where McAlarney and his team were coming from when they made this movie, but it’s a movie that goes on for a bit too long. While the movie’s absurdity is amusing and the chaos is entertaining, the pacing comes to a dead stop far too often. Giving the audience a chance to breathe between the high energy moments is good but with movies such as this, the pace needs to at least remain consistent and the length kept short. If not, then the audiences' attention may begin to wane.

Having said that, there are some other aspects about this movie that I did skip over (I could have gone into more detail about the comedy and the story), but for me, “The Ungovernable Force” was about the action and the tone. The action is cheesy low-budget absurdity and the tone is unapologetic anarchy, both of which comes from a very specific place — the filmmakers’ punk heritage and their love for Troma. While I can appreciate the film without that aspect, I cannot pretend that it doesn’t change the context of the movie as a whole. I can see many folks regarding this movie as nothing more than trash that’s trying to be shocking, what with a scene where a guy nails his dick to a table (and that’s not an effect, mind you). For my personal viewing experience though, I saw a movie where the folks involved were making out-of-control exploitation-shlock and were having fun in the process. Something I liked but appreciated more when I realized and understood where they were coming from.

Positive things:
- Troma and punk infused exploitation schlock.
- Completely uninhibited.
- Tiny monster puppet punks!
Some fun cameos from cult movie stars and punk musicians.

Negative things:
- Too many lulls where it feels like the movie stops.
- In need of a shorter runtime.

Gore: 3/5
Nudity: 4/5
Story: 2.5/5
Effects: 2/5
Comedy: 2/5

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